Monday, November 5, 2007

Wordly Wise

I've been reading Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.

For those who haven't read Carol's post or Anno's, Eat, Pray, Love is about one woman's year long journey through Italy (eat), India (pray), and Indonesia (love). During her time in Italy, a friend of hers in Rome explains that every city has its word. In Rome the word is SEX. In Stockholm, claims Liz's Swedish friend, Sophie, the word is CONFORM.

Ann Arbor's word is OPINIONATED.

You walk through our streets, sit in our cafes and restaurants, surf the internet in our public libraries, whisper before our movies start and what you'll hear are OPINIONS. Not opinions, but OPINIONS.

We go through life trying to slam our policies, theology and politics into the unwitting brain patterns of others.

This was a day when I was filled by OPINIONS, and tried to balance the OPINIONS of one family with the OPINIONS of another. And during my lunch hour at school, I listened to the OPINIONS of parents who had heard about the OPINIONS expressed on all sorts of schooling on this blog.

Opinions are good. Being able to express your opinions is very important. It's one of our most important rights here in the United States. It is one of the pillars of our culture and our society.

But sometimes... it would just be nice... if everyone... would... just...be...quiet.

Have a restful, peaceful evening!

12 comments:

Goofball said...

Hmm not sure if I can share your opinion on the fact that Ann Arbor's word is OPINIONATED. It might be your opinion that I should not have an opinion about that matter since I have not been in Ann Arbor yet. Nevertheless I felt it utterly important to share my opinion with you.

ok I'll shut up.

soccer mom in denial said...

Hmmmm..... blogging isn't exactly a medium "quiet" - just full of opinions.

And well, I do have an opinion about Gilbert's book. But I'll spare you. :) And be quiet.

Wholly Burble said...

It had been my opinion to write something to you of my opinion, but after reading the other post-scripts to your piece, I see others have been busy expressing their opinions, and after all, you did say you'd rather enjoy a bit of quiet--but then, that was your opinion today, and that might change by tomorrow, eh?

OK, I'm done too--in my opinion quiet is good.

anno said...

It is my humble opinion that you deserve a rest.

jennifer said...

Well said. I am a believer of not expressing my opinions too much, because it inevitably leads to me needing a rest- which it looks like you need right now. Take it...

Leslie said...

Hey Jen, I love you! Have a good night.

Mikaela said...

why was Stockholm's word conform?

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Okay, Goofball, maybe I have to take away your award, lol! No, maybe I have to give it to you again, because you made me laugh so hard.

And yes, SMID, I know, lol, but it was just where I was when I was writing ;-)

And WB, I wouldn't have expected anything less from you, lol.

Anno, Jennifer and Leslie, thanks for the support!

Mikaela, from the book: "Guilio asked, 'What's the word in New York City?'
I thought about this a moment, then decided. 'It's a verb, of course. I think it's ACHIEVE.'
(Which is subtly but significantly different from the word in Los Angeles, I believe, which is also a verb: SUCCEED. Later, I will share this whole theory with my Swedish friend Sofie, and she will offer her opinion that the word on the streets of Stockholm is CONFORM, which depresses both of us.)"

Jami said...

Well, that's YOUR opinion...

Flower Child said...

I think DC's word would be FACADE.

Mikaela said...

wow. i'm not sure I'd like that book a whole lot..!

Rebecca said...

hee hee - I hear you!

I wish I could come up with a word to sum up my town...but am at a complete loss.